Audio Recordings

Recording #1 “Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and the Kentucky Wired Story” from Lexington Broadband Conference. Released: 2015.

Recording 2 “Achieving the Last Mile” from Lexington Broadband Conference. Released: 2015.

Recording 3 “Exploring Options and Approaches for Broadband Financing” from Lexington Broadband Conference. Released: 2015.

Recording 4 “Federal Support for Broadband Projects” from Lexington Broadband Conference. Released: 2015.

Policy Agenda

Next Century Cities, Connecting 21st Century Communities: A Policy Agenda for Broadband Stakeholders

NCC Events

Digital New England: A Summit for Regional Broadband Leaders, view video from our September 2015 event in Portland, ME, co-hosted with the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA)

Special Access Rules Resources

The following videos offer additional background information on the issues surrounding special access rules:

Public Knowledge, this video, entitled Special Access: Too Special to be Competitive,” helps viewers to conceptualize special access and how the FCC relates to the issue.

Public Knowledge, a second video, entitled “Competition and Interconnection,” discusses how special access rules relate to these key principles of a free and open Internet.

Connecting Anchor Institutions Resources

These items contain additional information on anchor institutions and their integration into broadband networks.

Key Anchor Institution Organizations

Schools, Hospitals, and Libraries Broadband Coalition (SHLB), the SHLB coalition is an organization which provides support to communities and anchor institutions seeking connection to high-quality broadband Internet networks.

American Library Association

Connection Opportunities

USAC Rural Health Care, – the HealthCare Connect Fund program offers individual health care providers and health care consortia discounts of up to 65 percent towards the purchase of equipment needed to connect to high-speed broadband networks.

Education Superhighway, this organization works to improve broadband connectivity at public K-12 schools across the country. Education Superhighway provides resources on broadband connectivity for school district administrators and works to affect change on broadband policy at the state and national levels.

E-rate, the federal e-rate program helps provide broadband connectivity to schools across the country. This article provides background on recent changes to the program which provide greater funding and allow for greater flexibility and support broadband and wireless technologies.

Case Studies

Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) Evaluations, the site evaluations of federal BTOP recipients offers information about the role of anchor institutions and the benefits they enjoyed from higher speeds and lower costs. The Connecting America’s Communities map provides further information on anchor institutions connected to BTOP networks.

Longmont, CO Wide-Area Network, a recently-developed 10-gigabit wide-area network connecting schools in Longmont, Colorado has enabled students to access the Internet at higher speeds, while reducing schools’ data usage. You can learn more about the WAN by watching this video.

Rights of Way Management Resources

These materials offer further guidance on rights of way management, the subject of Next Century Cities’ June 15 members’ call. You may find slides from that call here.

General Information

These items provide a general overview of the topic, relevant considerations for city leaders, and best practices in effectively managing rights of way.

The Baller Herbst Law Group, “A Practical Primer on Pole Attachments” – this primer from the Baller Herbst Law Group provides an overview of the issue of pole attachments, with particular attention on relevant federal regulations.

NATOA Ad Hoc Committee for Rights-of-Way Policy, “Local Government Principles Relating to Rights-Of-Way Management and Compensation & Ownership of Telecommunications Facilities” – developed by the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors, this document provides guidance to local officials in thinking about rights of way-related issues by laying out a series of principles defining the issue and its stakes for local governments.

Checklists and Best Practices

Several organizations have developed checklists and other best practice-focused resources to guide communities through the steps of effectively managing rights of way.

CTC Technology and Energy, “Broadband Strategies Checklist” – this checklist from CTC Consulting gives best practice guidance on managing and governing rights of way for broadband infrastructure. The checklist was produced as an addendum to the CTC report “Gigabit Communities: Technical Strategies for Facilitating Public or Private Broadband Construction in Your Community” (see below).

CTC Technology and Energy, “Gigabit Communities: Technical Strategies for Facilitating Public or Private Broadband Construction in Your Community” – this report from CTC Consulting goes into greater detail on strategies for effectively developing a broadband network, including how to manage rights of way. Relevant sections for those interested in rights of way access include sections 2, 4, 5, and 8.

Google, “Google Fiber City Checklist” – produced to help guide candidate cities through the process of becoming a Google Fiber community, this checklist nevertheless provides universally-applicable guidance on how to manage rights of way.

Pole Attachments

Next Century Cities, “Next Century Cities Guide to Pole Attachments”


These two documents provide additional insight into real-world examples of rights of way management and its importance to communities.

NATOA Annual Conference, “City of Tacoma Case Study

National League of Cities et al., Comments before the Federal Communications Commission

Models 101 Resources

General Overview Resources

These resource provide a sense of the landscape of existing models for broadband deployment, and offer general tips for communities seeking to undertake broadband projects.

Community Broadband Bits, A guide to Minnesota models – this report examines 12 broadband projects in Minnesota that significantly involved local government, showcasing different models to achieve access to high-quality broadband Internet. The report offers insight into why each community chose its approach.

Community Broadband Bits, Justifying a network from indirect savings – this podcast with a consultant examines how broadband networks can result in significant savings to households, and how these and other indirect savings can be used to justify investment in broadband infrastructure. A transcript is available as well as the audio.

Open Technology Institute, The Art of the Possible: An Overview of Public Broadband Options” – this report from the Open Technology Institute provides a glimpse of the various models that have been used successfully by communities seeking to ensure access to fast, affordable, and reliable Internet.

Open Technology Institute, Building Broadband Commons: Tools for Planners and Communities” – this toolkit offers general tools for communities seeking to undertake projects related to broadband deployment. The tools offered do not pertain to any specific model, but are intended as general guidance.

Municipal networks

One widely-used approach is to develop a municipal network, owned and operated by a community government. Many, though not all, municipal networks are run by municipal electric utilities.

Gigabit Nation, Ohio’s gigabit city – this interview with Columbus, OH Department of Technology Director Gary Cavin reviews the city’s municipal fiber project, and offers lessons for other cities seeking to develop their own networks.

Gigabit Nation, Public utility-led networks – this podcast interview with Iowa Association of Municipal Utilities Broadband Services Coordinator Curtis Dean explores how municipal utilities can effectively lead broadband projects.

Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Broadband at the Speed of Light – this report studies three successful municipal utility-run fiber networks in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Lafayette, Louisiana, and Bristol, Virginia.

Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Wilson, NC – this case study examines the development and impacts of Wilson, North Carolina’s municipally-operated Greenlight network.

Public-private partnership

Due to the significant costs required for successful broadband network development, public-private partnerships are becoming a popular approach to develop the Internet capacities required by 21st century communities. These resources provide communities with information and best practices for public-private broadband projects.

Community Broadband Bits, Public and private ownershipthis podcast discussion with National Broadband Plan author Blair Levin explores the benefits and drawbacks of public and private ownership of broadband networks. A transcript is available as well as the audio.

Gigabit Nation, Public-private partnerships with UTOPIA – this podcast uses an agreement between the investment firm Macquarie and Utah’s UTOPIA network to examine how communities can effectively work with private sector partnerships.

National Telecommunications and Information Administration, Broadband USA:  An introduction to effective public-private partnerships for broadband investments” – this toolkit from the federal National Telecommunications and Information Administration offers background on different public-private partnership models, as well as case studies of model partnerships.

Open Access Networks

In this model, communities build the physical infrastructure required for high-speed Internet, while service providers compete to provide broadband Internet services to homes and businesses.

Gigabit Nation, Making the open access model work – this discussion with Mount Vernon, WA Information Services Director Kim Kleppe explores the community’s experiences in deploying an open access network, reviewing both major barriers and best practices for developing an open access project.

Institutional Networks / Connecting Anchor Institutions

In many cases, cities have chosen to develop their own institutional networks, or “I-nets,” to connect municipal facilities such as schools and police stations to gigabit networks.

Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Martin County, FL – this case study examines the experiences of  Martin County, Florida, which developed its own institutional fiber network to save money and connect schools and county facilities.

Incremental Models

Many cities choose to begin with smaller broadband projects. This allows for the project to be tested locally, then scaled out to an entire community.

Community Broadband Networks, Incremental approach with Auburn, IN – this podcast looks at how AUburn, Indiana has successfully developed a gigabit network through an incremental approach. A transcript is available as well as the audio.

Gigabit Nation, Statewide model from New York – New York State Broadband Program Director David Salway provides an update on the Empire State’s progress towards achieving universal access to broadband Internet for all homes and businesses and shares how the state was able to address challenges around planning and finance.

Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Chanute gigabit network – this case study looks at the rural community of Chanute, Kansas, and explores how the community has gradually grown out and expanded its 10Gbps fiber-optic network.

Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Santa Monica City Net – this case study examines how Santa Monica, California has successfully expanded its city-operated City Net municipal fiber network. A podcast (with transcript) also discusses this approach.

Regional Co-Ops

For smaller communities, especially those in rural areas, cooperation with neighboring towns can improve projects and lower costs. These regional co-ops have often been deployed in the past to provide utility services.

Gigabit Nation, Regional co-ops – regional co-ops offer an opportunity for smaller, rural communities to come together to develop critical infrastructure such as broadband Internet. This podcast interview shares experiences from Minnesota’s Consolidated Telephone Company co-op.

Telling Your Story Resources


John St. Julien, LUS Fiber (Community Broadband Bits podcast)

Billy Ray, Glasgow (KY) Electric Plant Board (Community Broadband Bits podcast)


“Collaborative Vision”
Kansas City Digital Drive

“Engaging Your Community Where It’s At Right Now”
Kansas City Digital Drive

Advertising Broadband

“Opelika FTTH Serving Residents, Businesses; New Marketing Videos”
Community Broadband Networks

“Google Ad Compares Fiber to Broadband”
Community Broadband Networks

“New Funny LUS Fiber HDTV Commercial”
Community Broadband Networks

“NextLight: Longmont’s Broadband”
City of Longmont, Colorado

Citizen Testimonials

“LUS Fiber Testimonials and Radio Ad”
Community Broadband Networks

“Chattanooga Creates Subscriber Testimonials for City Owned Broadband”
Community Broadband Networks

“100 Gigabit Creative”
Santa Monica CityNet

“100 Gigabit Beaches”
Santa Monica CityNet

Dig Once Resources


“Gigabit Communities: Technical Strategies for Facilitating Public or Private Broadband Construction in Your Community”
CTC Technology and Energy

Sample Policies

Brentwood requires developers to install telecommunications in new developments
Brentwood, California
Chapter 16.120.120C Advanced Technology Systems

Mount Vernon mandates private developers pay for conduit that becomes property of City
Mount Vernon, WA

Poulsbo requires private companies to use publicly-owned conduit
Poulsbo, Washington
Chapter 12.02.015D Conduit Standards

Santa Monica requires coordination among utilities sharing a right-of-way
Santa Monica, CA
Chapter 7.06.300 Coordination
Santa Monica Case Study

Seattle requires city agencies to coordinate excavation projects with city IT Department
Seattle, WA
Chapter 15.32.070 Additional Ducts or Conduits

News Coverage

Coverage of the success of Brentwood’s ‘dig once’ policy
Community Broadband Networks


Interview with David Asp of Dakota County, MN
Community Broadband Networks
Broadband Bits Podcast

Interview with Jory Wolf of Santa Monica, CA
Community Broadband Networks
Broadband Bits Podcast

Spotlight City Resources

Kansas City, Missouri

Spotlight City: Kansas City

Wilson, North Carolina

Spotlight City: Wilson

Ammon, Idaho

Spotlight City: Ammon

Additional Resources

“A Data-Driven Digital Inclusion Strategy for Gigabit Cities”
Denise Linn, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

One-Pager on Best Practices for City Governments
Denise Linn, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

“Bridging the Global Skills Gap Through Digital Learning”
Intel Education

From Gigabit Testbed to the “Game of Gigs”
The Third Annual Report of Gig

Carolina’s Connected Community: Wilson Gives Greenlight to Fast Internet
Institute for Local Self-Reliance

“Gigabit Communities: Technical Strategies for Facilitating Public or Private Broadband Construction in Your Community”
CTC Technology and Energy

The Art of the Possible – An Overview of Public Broadband Options
New America Foundation

Building Broadband Commons: Tools for Planners and Communities
New America Foundation

Broadband Strategies Checklist
CTC Technology and Energy

Community Broadband Map
Community Broadband Networks

Google Fiber City Checklist

Case Study: Bringing High-Speed Internet Access to Leverett
Berkman Center

FTTH Community Toolkit
Fiber to the Home Council

A Gigabit Garden Begins to Grow: Lessons from the First Planting
Gig.U (University Community Next Generation Innovation Project)

Stockholm’s Stokab: A Blueprint for Ubiquitous Fiber Connectivity?

The Leverett Municipal Broadband Model: An Overview of Institutional, Contractual, and Financial Arrangements Leverettnet Presentation

Letter to Mayor Berke and Rose from NCC

Letter II